by Edmondia Dantes

Disclaimer: Not mine.

AN: Requested by Ankhutenshi, with the prompt of Adult!Alex and Puck, and "wish."

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Long after he's picked up the tricks, learned to unravel and rebind the curling spells that flood the Manhatten air, he sits on the highest parapets with his beloved uncle and asks a thousand questions that will take more than a mortal lifetime to answer.

"What is the use of power if you can't use it?"

His uncle tilts his head to the side and blinks at him, and it almost makes him laugh, to think that any stranger would believe him to be the younger of the pair. "What do you think?"

He grins, because this is a game, and even when he's playing, every game is serious as death and eternity. "I'm asking."

"You should know better."

"Yes," he acknowledges, and watches his eyes. As always, they tell him nothing. "Why did you choose my father?"

"I was bored," his uncle tells him, and that, at least, is the truth, or the closest to it that he will ever know.

He's asked the question before, will ask it now, and will ask it again, because he can, because it's important, because... "...do you regret it?"

"You," his uncle tells him simply, "are very young."

It's not an answer, and it never will be, and when his phone rings, he's distracted by the everyday business of being Alexander Xanatos, and his uncle is hiding, the mask back in place, and he watches him as his father has taught him, and sees just as little, filtered through eyes that will always see him as magic no matter what guise he dons.

Power is power, in both the mortal world and beyond, but his wish will never come true, and he will hate his grandmother for all eternity for what she has done. It's a petty, vicious sort of revenge, and he deserves so much more, but the force of a corporate empire and a hybrid's magic is less than nothing to the power of Avalon.

Long ago, when he was a young boy and only beginning to understand the enormity of what he was, he'd spent long hours weeping in his father's arms - his father couldn't see the way he could, but he knew, and he understood - and when he'd begged him for an answer, he'd been hugged much too tightly, but his father had never spoken a word, and later, when he was older, he'd begun to understand.

His wish - his father's wish, his mother's wish - will never come true, but the brash brilliance of their mortal love is its own form of justice, and that will last forever.

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